The New Gulliver

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The New Gulliver
New-Gulliver-poster.jpg
Directed by Aleksandr Ptushko
Written by Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky (uncredited) [1]
Aleksandr Ptushko
Grigori Roshal
Jonathan Swift (novel)
StarringVladimir Konstantinovich Konstantinov (Gulliver)
Ivan Yudin
Shaolin Santiago (unconfirmed)
Music byLev Shvarts
CinematographyNikolai Renkov
Release date
  • 25 March 1935 (1935-03-25)
Running time
75 min
CountrySoviet Union
LanguageRussian

The New Gulliver (Russian : Новый Гулливер, Novyy Gullivyer) is a Soviet stop motion-animated cartoon, and the first to make such extensive use of puppet animation, running almost all the way through the film (it begins and ends with short live-action sequences). [2] The film was released in 1935 to widespread acclaim and earned director Aleksandr Ptushko a special prize at the International Cinema Festival in Milan. The part of Gulliver was played by Vladimir Konstantinovich Konstantinov, who was born in 1920 and died in 1944 near Tallinn in the Second World War. This was his first and only film role.

Russian language East Slavic language

Russian is an East Slavic language, which is official in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, as well as being widely used throughout Eastern Europe, the Baltic states, the Caucasus and Central Asia. It was the de facto language of the Soviet Union until its dissolution on 25 December 1991. Although, nowadays, nearly three decades after the breakup of the Soviet Union, Russian is used in official capacity or in public life in all the post-Soviet nation-states, as well as in Israel and Mongolia, the rise of state-specific varieties of this language tends to be strongly denied in Russia, in line with the Russian World ideology.

Stop motion animation technique to make a physically manipulated object appear to move on its own

Stop motion is an animated-film making technique in which objects are physically manipulated in small increments between individually photographed frames so that they will appear to exhibit independent motion when the series of frames is played back as a fast sequence. Dolls with movable joints or clay figures are often used in stop motion for their ease of repositioning. Stop-motion animation using plasticine figures is called clay animation or "clay-mation". Not all stop motion, however, requires figures or models: stop-motion films can also be made using humans, household appliances, and other objects, usually for comedic effect. Stop motion using humans is sometimes referred to as pixilation or pixilate animation.

Animation process of creating animated films and series

Animation is a method in which pictures are manipulated to appear as moving images. In traditional animation, images are drawn or painted by hand on transparent celluloid sheets to be photographed and exhibited on film. Today, most animations are made with computer-generated imagery (CGI). Computer animation can be very detailed 3D animation, while 2D computer animation can be used for stylistic reasons, low bandwidth or faster real-time renderings. Other common animation methods apply a stop motion technique to two and three-dimensional objects like paper cutouts, puppets or clay figures.

Contents

Plot

The story, a Communist re-telling of Gulliver's Travels , is about a young boy who dreams of himself as a version of Gulliver who has landed in Lilliput suffering under capitalist inequality and exploitation.

<i>Gullivers Travels</i> novel by Jonathan Swift

Gulliver's Travels, or Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships, is a prose satire by Irish writer and clergyman Jonathan Swift, that is both a satire on human nature and the "travellers' tales" literary subgenre. It is Swift's best known full-length work, and a classic of English literature. He himself claimed that he wrote Gulliver's Travels "to vex the world rather than divert it".

Lilliput and Blefuscu fictional island

Lilliput and Blefuscu are two fictional island nations that appear in the first part of the 1726 novel Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift. The two islands are neighbours in the South Indian Ocean, separated by a channel 800 yards (730 m) wide. Both are inhabited by tiny people who are about one-twelfth the height of ordinary human beings. Both kingdoms are empires, i.e. realms ruled by a self-styled emperor. The capital of Lilliput is Mildendo. In some pictures, the islands are arranged like an egg, as a reference to their egg-dominated histories and cultures.

The pioneer Petya Konstantinov (Vladimir Konstantinov), as an award for the best young OSVOD member of Artek, receives his favorite book — "Gulliver's Travels" by Johnathan Swift. Together with other pioneers who repaired the sailboat "Artek" with their own hands, he goes on for a walk to the Adalara's islands which are near the summer camp. There, during vacation, children ask the leader to read them aloud Petya's book. Petya falls asleep while reading and finds himself in the world described in the book.

Pioneer movement

A pioneer movement is an organization for children operated by a communist party. Typically children enter into the organization in elementary school and continue until adolescence. The adolescents then typically join the Young Communist League. Prior to the 1990s there was a wide cooperation between pioneer and similar movements of about 30 countries, coordinated by the international organization, International Committee of Children's and Adolescents' Movements, founded in 1958, with headquarters in Budapest, Hungary.

Artek (camp) Russian international children center

Artek is an international children center on the Black Sea in the town of Hurzuf located on the Crimean Peninsula, near Ayu-Dag. It was established on 16 June 1925.

Sailboat boat propelled partly or entirely by sails

A sailboat or sailing boat is a boat propelled partly or entirely by sails smaller than a sailing ship. Distinctions in what constitutes a sailing boat and ship vary by region and maritime culture.

In the dream, Petya travels by ship, but during sailing, his vessel is attacked by pirates. Together with three captives, the boy fights with them and wins, but at this moment, the pirate ship crashes into the rocks. The teenager recovers ashore, surrounded and tied up by Liliputians. He is put to sleep with a potion. At this time in the parliament, there is a debate on what to do with the new Gulliver. Ministers on behalf of the king make the decision to use Gulliver for military purposes. The boy is transported to the city by means of 15 tractors and a special platform. Petya is awoken by the king who puts a sceptre up to his nose. He learns about the decision which was made by the parliament, but disagrees with it. After that under his feet a military parade passes.

Tractor engineering vehicle specifically designed to deliver a high tractive effort

A tractor is an engineering vehicle specifically designed to deliver a high tractive effort at slow speeds, for the purposes of hauling a trailer or machinery used in agriculture or construction. Most commonly, the term is used to describe a farm vehicle that provides the power and traction to mechanize agricultural tasks, especially tillage, but nowadays a great variety of tasks. Agricultural implements may be towed behind or mounted on the tractor, and the tractor may also provide a source of power if the implement is mechanised.

Sceptre symbolic ornamental staff or wand held in the hand by a ruling monarch

A sceptre or scepter is a symbolic ornamental staff or wand held in the hand by a ruling monarch as an item of royal or imperial insignia. Figuratively, it means royal or imperial authority or sovereignty.

Military parade

A military parade is a formation of soldiers whose movement is restricted by close-order manoeuvering known as drilling or marching. The military parade is now almost entirely ceremonial, though soldiers from time immemorial up until the late 19th century fought in formation. Massed parades may also hold a role for propaganda purposes, being used to exhibit the apparent military strength of one's nation.

At this time, somewhere in cellars, a meeting of workers passes. Strike is appointed next day. The workers decide to find out who he is and find Petya's notebook on Russian language from which they learn that he is for the mighty union of workers from all around the world.

Meeting event in which two or more people assemble

A meeting is when two or more people come together to discuss one or more topics, often in a formal or business setting, but meetings also occur in a variety of other environments. Many various types of meetings exist.

Notebook book for writing, drawing, scrapbooking

A notebook is a book or binder of paper pages, often ruled, used for purposes such as recording notes or memoranda, writing, drawing or scrapbooking.

Petya is fed from the conveyor, with a crane being used to feed him. The whole Royal Court is present, and the corps de ballet performs. When they start singing to him how well people live under the leadership of the wise king, Petya interrupts the singer and starts singing the pioneer song. It is picked up by workers in the cellars. The court disperses in horror.

Crane (machine) type of machine

A crane is a type of machine, generally equipped with a hoist rope, wire ropes or chains, and sheaves, that can be used both to lift and lower materials and to move them horizontally. It is mainly used for lifting heavy things and transporting them to other places. The device uses one or more simple machines to create mechanical advantage and thus move loads beyond the normal capability of a human. Cranes are commonly employed in the transport industry for the loading and unloading of freight, in the construction industry for the movement of materials, and in the manufacturing industry for the assembling of heavy equipment.

Corps de ballet group of dancers who are not soloists

In ballet, the corps de ballet[kɔʁ də balɛ] is the group of dancers who are not soloists. They are a permanent part of the ballet company and often work as a backdrop for the principal dancers. A corps de ballet works as one, with synchronized movements and corresponding positioning on the stage.

The police chief decides to kill Petya, and instructs employees of the underground plant to make a batch of weapons. The workers warn him, and the police learns about it immediately, but at this time, strike already begins. Workers take over the arsenal. The police tries to poison the boy, but he doesn't swallow the poison and spits it out, having pretended that he has died. Military operations begin. Insurgents are thrown to the sea by armed forces of Liliputia, but Petya goes into action, he seizes the royal ships. Workers on the earth develop success, undermine land mines and tanks. The guard and the court runs away. The king does not manage to hold on to the tower and, when falling, seizes an arrow of the tower clock. Petya blows in the horn which inexplicably appears in his hands, removes the bell from the city tower belfry and then shakes it in a manner of a hand bell. Then he proclaims: "The meeting of free Liliputiya I declare open!" and wakes up from the laughter of companions as he said the last phrase aloud.

Creators

English Russian
ScenarioGrigory Roshal
Alexander Ptushko
Григорий Рошаль
Александр Птушко
Statement of the honored artist of the republic A. L. PtushkoПостановка заслуженного артиста республики А. Л. Птушко
The director of photographyN. S. RenkovН. С. Ренков
The operatorI. ShkarenkovИ. Шкаренков
The artist of dollsSarr MokilСарра Мокиль
The artist of sceneryY. ShvetsЮ. Швец
SculptureOlga TayozhnayaОльга Таёжная
PaintingA. NikulinА. Никулин
PropertiesA. ZharenovА. Жаренов
The composerLev ShvartsЛев Шварц
The sound technicianA. KorobovА. Коробов
The text of songsSamuil BolotinСамуил Болотин
The chief of groupA. MininА. Минин
AnimatorFyodor Krasniy (in credits it isn't specified)Фёдор Красный (в титрах не указан)

Awards

History

After experimenting with various animation techniques from 1928-1932, including the combination of puppets and live action in the same frame, Ptushko (along with the animation crew he had assembled over the years) began work on his first feature film. Written and directed by Ptushko, The New Gulliver was one of the first feature-length films to combine stop-motion animation with live-action footage (the first few were made by Willis O'Brien, who was responsible for The Lost World and King Kong ).

After the film's success, Ptushko was allowed by Mosfilm to set up his own department, which became known as "the Ptushko Collective," for the making of stop-motion animated films. This group of filmmakers would produce another fourteen animated shorts from 1936 to 1938, and a new feature, The Golden Key , in 1939.

"My liliputian-girl"

In the children's movie, there was also a place of the parody to bourgeois and "antinational" art against which furiously fought in the USSR. Decadent love romances, in particular performed by Alexander Vertinsky, were a sign of petty-bourgeois, pre-revolutionary and emigrant bourgeois life, Chansons had to parody them. However, on a twist of fate, the song of the impresario Fo-Lya "My liliputian-girl" (the text — Samuil Bolotin, music — Lev Schvarts) became some kind of classics, as well as Vertinsky's songs which it parodied. The song:

My liliputian-girl, come to me,
We will stay minute alone!
With you it is careless as a bird, I will be turned,
My liliputian-girl, my dream!
My liliputian-girl, my love,
Having mixed words, I sing without words:
"La-la-la-la-la, la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la-la!"
My liliputian-girl, my dream!

Technique

The New Gulliver featured 3,000 different puppets. Each of the puppets had a detachable head, which made them capable of a wide range of expressions and personality. A live actor and mechanically-operated puppets were used in some shots, while in others, both the Lilliputians and the boy were animated puppets (a full-size puppet of the boy was constructed).

The main puppet characters (the Abbott, the Dandy, the Financier, the King, the Chief of Police, the Prime Minister) had, according to Ptushko, "from two to three hundred interchangeable heads with various facial expressions". [3]

Production

The edition on video

At the beginning of the 1990s, the movie was released on videotapes by the film association "Krupnyy Plan". At the beginning of the 2000s, it was reissued on VHS by the Master Teyp company.

On 10 March 2005, the movie was released on DVD by Soyuz Video studio. Restored versions of the movie on DVD were also issued by the Retro-klub, Vostok V, Videobaza and Music-treyd company.

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References

  1. 1 2 Sigizmund Krzhizhanovsky. The Complete Works in 5 Volumes. Volume 1. ed. by Vadim Perelmuter. Saint Petersburg: Symposium, 2001, 688 pages. ISBN   5-89091-132-5
  2. The animation for Ladislas Starevich's The Tale of the Fox was completed in 1930, but the film was not released until 1937.
  3. Pettigrew, Neil (1999). The Stop-Motion Filmography. MacFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. pp. 509–511. ISBN   0-7864-0446-9.